Obama says Martin's death a tragedy, asks nation to respect call for calm
President Barack Obama spoke about the killing of Trayvon Martin on March 23, 2012 at the White House.
July 14th, 2013
02:58 PM ET
8 years ago

Obama says Martin's death a tragedy, asks nation to respect call for calm

Washington (CNN) - President Barack Obama called on Sunday for "calm reflection" following the acquittal of George Zimmerman in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin.

The president, in a statement, acknowledged an emotionally charged climate but concluded that "we are a nation of laws, and a jury has spoken."


Filed under: President Obama
soundoff (778 Responses)
  1. janae

    Obama is so unfair. That boy was not the online but that got unfair justice, people get killed everyday of all colors, how come Obama cant talk about those people? how come Obama didn't talk about those black thugs that shot that Caucasian baby in his head and killed him, Obama is just trying to please the BLACK community because that's were most of his votes came from, sadly my dad made my vote for Obama....im Black..We have thousands of troops in Afghanistan and all Obama is worried about a boy? people die daily, he is so unfair, I know its so sad this kid had his life taken from him, but the media only pulls stories they think will interest people..GOSH Obama, i have so many things i want to say...

    July 14, 2013 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  2. A Once Supporter

    Obama, I am finally understanding what all of the RW conservatives have been saying. You are a good campaigner that likes to stir the political pot. However, you have NO solutions. I have grown tired of listening to you use the position of the president to advance social agendas that divide our country. I truly believe race relations have suffered under your presidency. You are nothing more than a rebel rouser and would be better served as a vocal addition to groups like the NAACP or The Black Panthers.

    July 14, 2013 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  3. TSB8C

    Let's see here...smoke dope, get expelled from school multiple times for drugs in your locker, painting gang graffiti, and having a "burglary tool" and a bag of women's jewelry, have a record for fights in the past, openly tell people that you want to get a gun and be a gangster, use racial slurs against another race, peek in the windows of homes where you don't live, and then attack a man when he asks you what you are up to. Bash his head against the concrete and punch him several times until he pulls his legally licensed weapon and shoots you in plain self defense in accordance with state and "natural" law. Now we should "honor" this punk? He should be a "role model" to other black youth? He warrants a "shout out" from the President? Good riddance.

    July 14, 2013 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  4. Anonymous

    The hottest place in Hell is reserved for those who remain neutral in times of great moral conflict.

    July 14, 2013 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  5. wildman36

    Whats the president getting involved in something like this anyway? When he said if he had a son he would look like TM was wrong and him saying anything about this is wrong.

    July 14, 2013 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  6. Hello

    Why are those that are so against gun rights are the same ones who have armed guards all around them 24/7/365. Of course the do not feel THEY need to carry themselves.. they have an army all around them to do it for them. .

    Paid for by US Tax payers..

    July 14, 2013 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  7. Varissee

    The laws of America are against black people!!!! Always have been & always will be. The nations laws are unjust, uncompromising & unfair when it comes to everyone except this white nation. We want peace & we want justice. Even Steven-Malcolm X!!!

    July 14, 2013 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  8. Billy

    What about peace and respect for Zimmerman? It is a tragedy that any of this had to happen, but if it were not GZ, somebody would have probably taken this kid's life because he was trouble! I am sorry for the Martin family; they will never be at peace because they are bitter and angry. However, the law has spoken and GZ was found not guilty. How about an apology for GZ and a request to give the man peace. I am not white, but I must say that the bad name blacks have is one they have created for themselves. There is a reason the "n word" will not die. Obomba has set the race war back 50 years. And I will not be honoring a thug.....but I will pray for peace for his family as well as Zimmermans.

    July 14, 2013 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  9. Anonymous

    You a grown man screaming for help with a gun never heard of it the victim will scream for help# common sense people# trayvon was the victim

    July 14, 2013 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  10. daveugber

    We have a President who subtly refutes the Supreme Court, and now he is criticizing a 'jury of our peers'. Aren't there any democrats just a little disappointed in the direction this President keeps pushing us?

    July 14, 2013 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  11. Susan

    Barak and Michelle should stay out of this one. In their current and previous comments they have shown their inability to be objective and sound little different than jackson and sharpton.

    July 14, 2013 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  12. Anonymous

    you'd think blacks don't kill every day ...young man wanted a fight and unfortunately he got one

    July 14, 2013 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  13. Stargazer

    no fists, no need to have to use a gun. Martin should have gone home, told his dad, someone is following me and called the police. Why oh why did he have a need to take matters into his own hands? There was no violence to provoke his fists into slamming blows into Zimmerman's face or did I miss something here? I cannot comprehend how that piece of evidence is swept under a rug. Did Zimmerman beat himself up?

    July 14, 2013 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  14. cathstar

    The President's statement said as little as possible and did not take sides. Too bad that black athletes couldn't follow his lead. Their comments were all racist. Wonder if they remember O.J. Simpson killing two white people and being found not guilty. Guess that's OK in their minds. Unfortunately, I don't believe that racism will ever sop in our country. It's very sad.

    July 14, 2013 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  15. Pat

    I think we have bigger problems to address than a self defense case that ended with a verdict of not guilty. Lets start with the many violations to the Constitution. Freedom of speech, rights to privacy...all out the window. Those rights at one time was inalienable and meant something. How have we got to this point? Its becoming difficult to tell the good guys from the bad. History will judge your administration. Currently, I rank it third worst in the history of the nation. Hoover being first, GW Bush being second, and you get third. Its almost a tie with you and Coolidge. Your no Roosevelt or Lincoln. Btw, I voted for you twice. I keep thinking this all reminds me of McCarthyism.

    July 14, 2013 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  16. joan

    @Matt = "watch out for his neighbors?" The kid wasn't doing nothing but walking back to where he was visiting. he wasn't causing trouble. He was profiled by a racist thug who took his life. If only zimmerman would have done what he was told by the police dispatcher. He is so responsible for his actions.

    July 14, 2013 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  17. Goby

    The cop told Zimmerman to back down. Why why didn't he? They were notified- leave him alone now. That mistake in obeying an order in itself warrants some kind of punishment given the tragic outcome.

    July 14, 2013 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  18. Sue

    Wonder if the NRA helped pay for Zimmerman's defence????? Here come the book deals I can just see it now. Zimmerman forever has Trayvons blood on his hands too bad if he's afraid. Trayvon didn't have a voice. The whole
    verdict just stinks!

    July 14, 2013 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  19. nuclear mike

    Watch how the Presdient is "back peddling" now, careful of the coming 2014 elections to say what he thinks we need to hear while meaning none of what he says.
    The Blacks have tired us all out of their endless demands for their freedom from everything that makes America great so they can continue to be the 'bottom of the barrel"...

    July 14, 2013 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  20. Ian

    You won your re-election campaign. You can stop running for office already Mr. President.

    Perhaps the "question for America," Mr. President, would be why people feel like they need a neighborhood watch, and why young men like Trayvon Martin already have criminal records at that age. Perhaps the family unit has deteriorated so much that we have to protect ourselves and our property from children. Passing useless laws and political grandstanding won't save the next young black man from death. But of course – you should know that Mr. President... You know Chicago very well. Your city has seen 200 homicides this year as of the 4th of July. What makes a violent young punk like Trayvon Martin so special? The truth is – he's only special because he can be used to make some political statement. The rest of the country won't know the names of the 200+ people who died in your city. They're just not politically useful. And that's just YOUR city.

    You want to heal the country? Go back to the ideals of our founding fathers. Ideals of being a God fearing, moral people. People's CHARACTER needs to change – you can't strip away the principles our country was founded on – and then try to legislate it back into existence through useless gun laws. If you don't have people with a self-guiding sense of what is right – then lets just sit back and watch the body count rise.

    July 14, 2013 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  21. Econ for dummies

    what if trayvon martin shot zimmerman and then argued "stand your ground".

    July 14, 2013 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  22. Private

    Zimmerman is mixed so why would it be a racist reason at all I'm sure he was judged at one time and it was a neighbor hood watch he was doing his job keeping the neighbor hood safe and it might of been self defense black men are leading in crimes more than other colors that's statics but we try to save them and they become gangs or thugs and it gets worse he was doing his job but because a black man was killed its outrage what if it was a white man or mexican I bet no one would even care I bet the president wouldn't even make a comment everything is held on color in this case and that is what needs to stop the whole world is racist but one thing for sure it was his job and it was self defense and how many black men a day try doing something stupid let's look at statics and see the truth

    July 14, 2013 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  23. glk20c

    King Obama wants to stem "gun violence" after a court rules GZ legally used his firearms in self defense. Tell us that King Obama's idea of gun control is no one having a gun.

    July 14, 2013 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  24. Don Radio

    The culture of violence is the real problem here. In my opinion GZ thought he was defending his neighborhood and TM was defending his personal safety. If either had avoided the ultimate confrontation then TM would still be alive.

    July 14, 2013 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  25. Love not hate

    This young man did not do anything to elicit George Zimmerman to follow him. Regardless of what Trayvonn's actions were in the past, and mind you he was a teenager. I highly doubt any of us were perfect in our teenage years. However, Mr. Zimmerman was instructed not to pursue the young man. Had he listened in the first place, there would have been no need for self defense. It is great that George Zimmerman wanted to protect his neighborhood, but he was the adult in the situation. Therefore had he handled the situation differently, I believe the outcome would have been different. I believe he needs to take responsibility for his actions.

    July 14, 2013 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
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